Author ORCID Identifier

Date Available


Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)

Document Type

Master's Thesis




Early Childhood, Special Education, and Rehabilitation Counseling

First Advisor

Dr. Melinda Jones Ault

Second Advisor

Dr. Justin D. Lane


The purpose of the study was to compare the differential effects of response-independent and response-dependent criteria used to determine when to increase to the next delay interval in the progressive time delay (PTD) procedure. An adapted alternating treatments design was used to evaluate the relative efficiency of two variations of the PTD procedure when teaching expressive word identification to elementary-aged boys with moderate to severe disabilities, language impairments, and reading deficits. The participants’ school was closed due to a pandemic prior to completion of the study. Therefore, conclusions about results should be considered in light of this limitation. Results obtained indicated that both variations were effective in increasing participants’ percentage of unprompted correct responses when identifying sight words. Results pertaining to the differentiation in the acquisition rates of both variations were mixed but indicated some superiority with the response-dependent variation. Results pertaining to which variation was more efficient in increasing independent performance with fewer errors were mixed and indicated that either (a) there was not a noteworthy difference in error rates between variations or (b) the response-dependent variation resulted in lower error rates. Neither variation was considerably more efficient in terms of the instructional time required to implement the procedures.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)